Royal Icing Recipe

Royal Icing Recipe

(slight adaptation of Antonia 74 Recipe)

  • 5 TBSP meringue powder
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 6 oz warm water (3/4 C)
  • 2.25 lbs powdered sugar (roughly 8 C or a 2 lb bag works)
  • generous tsp of corn syrup (I use less in humid areas)
  • 1 – 2 TBSP emulsion or extract of choice
  1.  In mixer bowl, pour in the warm water, meringue powder, and cream of tartar.  Mix it with a whisk by hand until it is frothy.
  2. Pour in all the powdered sugar and mix on lowest speed using the paddle attachment for 10 minutes.  Scrape down the sides after the first coupe of minutes to make sure all sugar is incorporated so there are no grainy bits.
  3. Add corn syrup and emulsion during the last couple minutes of mixing.  

The frosting should be thick and creamy with stiff peaks.  Use it immediately or place in a container with a tight fitting lid as it dries fast.  There is no hard and fast rule about how long it stays fresh, but it will separate and need to be re-mixed.  Some decorators freeze leftover icing with great results.


  • Michael’s and Walmart carries some LorAnn’s Emulsions.  Extracts and emulsions are interchangeable; oils and candy flavorings are a different potency.  You can find endless flavors online.
  • After mixing, slowly add the water to get a flood consistency.  It’s easier to add more water than to rep thicken your icing.
  • I color before I thin, that way if I want a piping consistency and a flood, they will be a perfect match if I bag some for piping, then thin the rest for flood.
  • For flood, I use about a 10 – 12 second flood consistency:  run a knife through the icing and count the seconds it takes for the surface to become smooth.  You need to find the best consistency you prefer through practice.
  • For piping, I add just enough water so when I pull some up with a knife, the peaks barely fall.
  • There are many variables when creating with sugar and weighing takes out some of the guesswork as you adapt it to better suit your conditions and to get the results you want.  

Here it is in Italian

  • 46 gr polvere di meringa
  • 4 gr cremor tartaro
  • 172 gr di acqua calda
  • 1024 gr di zucchero a velo
  • aroma o estratto a piacere (opzionale)
  • 1/2 cucchiaio di sciroppo di glucosio (opzionale)

*assicuratevi che la ciotola e la frusta siano completamente sgrassate prima di utilizzarle.

Mettete la polvere di meringa e il cremor tartaro nella ciotola della planetaria e versatevi l’acqua mescolando con una frusta a mano, finchè le polveri si saranno sciolte e il composto risulterà spumoso.
Aggiungete lo zucchero a velo e mescolate con la foglia o la frusta della planetaria a velocità minima per 6/10 minuti, aggiungento aromi e glucosio all’ultimo minuto.
La ghiaccia dovrà avere una consistenza “stiff peacks”.
Questa ricetta basta per coprire molti biscotti e ha una conservazione molto lunga. Può essere surgelata.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. lee sherwood

    What does corn syrup do for the frosting? Also, isn’t the frosting very hard(when dry) when you use 5 TBSP. of meringue powder. I have cut mine back to 2 TBSP. for a measured 2 lbs. of powdered sugar. My husband is the "taster" and he says that is much better.

    1. Arty McGoo

      The corn syrup gives the frosting a bit of a sheen when it’s dried. Also, I find just that little amount helps make a better canvas for painting on. I tried it without and the color seemed to seep into tiny little cracks and seemed to be more porous. As for the meringue powder, people use anywhere from 1 TBSP – 10 TBSP per 2 lbs of powdered sugar. This version always works for me. I love hearing about other people’s preferences. There are so many variables when working with sugar!

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